Sunday, 30 October 2011

2 True Crystal Nail Polish: Shade 3 Mysterious Turquoise

An update: Nail Envy seems pretty good. At least, after a week of using it, my nubs have 1) failed to completely break all the way back to the quick like they usually do without acrylic overlays, and 2) they seem to have grown. Just a little bit. Also, the new cuticle butter I've been using seems to be helping my poor long suffering cuticles. They're still not perfect but they're getting there!

I've been putting the Nail Envy on religiously but I have to say... I'm bored of looking at my naked nubbins :/
The Nail Envy instructions do hint at the possibility of using nail polish at the same time (it says 'remove along with any nail polish after a week') so I figured it couldn't hurt too much to restore some colour to my nails!

So without further ado I present to you: 2True Crystal Nail Polish, in shade 3.

Now before we start, I'd just like to say I wish companies would stop only using a number to describe their shades instead of a name. It's boring, uninspiring, and uninventive. A little poking around on the 2True website has revealed that this shade is actually called Mysterious Turquoise: still not that inventive, but at least they tried. I'm just not sure why they don't actually put the name on the bottle? It'd make it a lot easier to picture the colour when you don't have the bottle in front of you, for a start.

Anyway, mini rant aside, this polish is from a limited edition collection 2True have released in the run up to Christmas this year. There's 4 shades: a red, a purple, a blue and this turquoise, all are very pretty, vivid jewel toned metallic/shimmer shades, with more than a hint of sparkle and an attractive price tag of £1.99 for 7ml (I got 3 for £4.99 on a special offer deal).

Application is surprisingly good for such a cheapie polish: the first coat is disturbingly sheer and you catch yourself thinking 'oh no... it's going to be an 8-coater'. But appearances are deceptive and it's actually opaque after two coats; I did three for the extra depth of colour. The brush is long and thin and quite narrow, nicely flexible without being floppy, and holds just the right amount of polish for a neat and tidy cuticle line - handy for me at the moment, since whilst my cuticles are recovering from their recent trauma, clean up, and any more acetone than absolutely necessary to remove the mani once I'm done wearing it, are banned!

Drying time is average, though it's touch dry pretty quickly, it's a while longer before you can risk poking it any harder without expecting it to leave a mark. Wear is good; considering my nails are so short now and chip much faster than they did when long, I only got a little wear and no chips after 24 hours even though I didn't use a topcoat. The finish is really good: heaps of really fine grade glitter that catches the light well and gives an eyecatching shimmery metallic effect. There's no hint of brush strokes or patchiness either (once you get past that uber-sheer first coat: brace yourself, it's all going to turn out fine!).

Overall, I really like this polish. It's cheap and cheerful yet with a decent formula: a colour that hasn't been too done to death by the other brands yet, and is pleasantly sparkly, yet with fine enough glitter that removal isn't a big deal. I suspect that the sheerness seen when you only use one coat might make it a good polish for layering, too... some experimentation needed, methinks! It looks pretty festive, without screaming 'Christmas Manicure', and with the trend this season for jewel toned clothes and accessories, you'll get use out of it for more than just the office Xmas do.

Friday, 21 October 2011

The Horror!

They're so short :( and it feels weird! And look how sad my cuticles are! Poor neglected things... They're not enjoying all the work I've been doing .(or the harsh disinfectant foam I'm using at work, evil stuff, ugh). I need to break out the cuticle treatments STAT!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Change is afoot (or should that be a-nail?)

Some nail news for y'all... I'm going to have to cut my nails short! -sob- Life issues at the moment have left me having to do lots of manual work of the kind that makes long nails impractical... and I'd rather cut them short now than rip them off by accident.

Rather than wailing too much about my impending nubbins, I figured it might be a good opportunity to try something new. I have a medical condition that causes my nails to grow very fast, but also ridiculously thin and weak. In their natural state they tear and peel and break off below the quick (yes, that does hurt, a LOT) and I can barely maintain a 1mm free edge, let alone the length they are at now. At the moment, to stop them turning into bloody stumps I have to protect them with a layer of acrylic gel, but quite frankly it's a pain to maintain and it makes swatching difficult, slow and annoying :(

SO... whilst they're short, I'm going to try out an alternative solution that I've heard many other bloggers raving about: OPI Nail Envy. Hopefully this will succeed where many other nail strengtheners have failed me (Mavala, Sally Hansen, I'm looking at you) and I can quit the gel overlays in favour of all natural nails.

The Nail Envy has been ordered... watch this space! (though you may want to avert your gaze for a while if nubbins aren't your thing...)

Wish me luck... I'm a little scared!! Haven't had nubs for over a year!

Saturday, 15 October 2011

China Glaze : Secret Peri-wink-le

Good morning! Life's got in the way recently and forced a short break from blogging... sorry for the silence, everyone! I'm back now, and hopefully things will stay quiet(ish) this time!

I thought for my next mani it would be nice to use a polish I've worn a few times before now : Secret Peri-wink-le, from the Operation Color collection by China Glaze.

A gorgeous dusty periwinkle blue creme, this polish differs from my other periwinkle shades (I have several, mostly because it's a colour I can't seem to resist buying) because it leans quite noticeably towards a lilac tone. Of course my camera completely refuses to capture this hint of lilac and would rather make me look like I'm imagining it, but I promise it's there in real life!

The formula is a little odd. It's quite thick and creamy, so you'd think it would have good coverage, but it tends to dry a bit patchy. Two coats can be opaque if you're careful but I had to do three because of patches on a couple of nails. Drying time could be better, probably because of the thickness, but it's not terrible (just don't do it if you're in a rush). On the other hand, application is pretty tidy, the brush is nice (no bells or whistles or funny shapes, but the length and flexibility are good and together with the thicker polish, it allows for good control). I didn't have to clean up this mani at all.


The slightly blah formula is more than made up for by the wear. Three coats with no topcoat - three days later and a lot of typing and hand washing have had NO EFFECT on this polish - I kid you not, I have no chips, my cuticle line is intact and there is no tip wear at all! It also dries pretty glossy - this is definitely a polish you can skip the topcoat on, if you want!

Whilst I have you, check out my new shape! I'm testing out a shorter length on my thumb nails - since squares and squovals don't really look right on me, I played around and came up with this kind of almond shape. What do you think looks better? Long and pointy or short almonds?